All Services Meet Active-Duty Recruiting Goals for August
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 10, 2007 All four services reported strong recruiting success in August, with the Army marking its second consecutive month exceeding its monthly goal, Defense Department officials announced today.
The Army topped its August goal by 6 percent, bringing 10,126 new soldiers into the force. The Army made 102 percent of its goal in July. Officials expressed confidence that the consecutive successes mark a turnaround from May and June, when the Army fell short in recruiting.
Army Maj. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick, commander of U.S. Army Recruiting Command, attributes much of the rebound to the Army’s new “quick-ship” bonus program that provides $20,000 in financial incentives for recruits willing to ship off quickly to basic training.
Bostick told Pentagon reporters last week that it’s one of several initiatives the Army has put in place to ensure it meets its fiscal 2007 recruiting goals. He vowed to close any remaining gaps by Sept. 30 to meet the active Army’s year-end goal of 80,000 recruits and the Army Reserve’s goal of 26,500.
The other services enjoyed strong recruiting months in August, too. The Marine Corps topped its monthly goal by 5 percent, bringing in 4,700 new Marines. The Navy and Air Force both reached their goals, 4,194 and 3,128, respectively.
In the reserve components, the Army Reserve reported a successful August, too, reaching 107 percent of its monthly goal. As it brought in 3,659 recruits, it also exceeded its retention goals for first-termers as well as career soldiers.
“That’s remarkable,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Leon Caffie, the Army Reserve’s top noncommissioned officer. “If you look at the stats for soldiers who have been deployed in the Army Reserve, those retention rates are astronomical, as well. … We have done a remarkable job of retaining soldiers with combat experience, who have deployed into either Afghanistan or Iraq.”
The Navy Reserve and Marine Corps Reserve also exceeded their August goals. The Navy Reserve topped its goal by 13 percent, with 1,122 new recruits, and the Marine Corps Reserve, by 18 percent, with 560 recruits. The Air Force met its goal, recruiting 858 airmen.
The Army National Guard and Air National Guard fell short, 87 and 96 percent, respectively. The Army Guard recruited 5,596 soldiers, and the Air Guard, 1,141 airmen.
National Guard officials noted that despite a slight recruiting shortfall, both components continue to enjoy strong retention numbers. They said this has enabled them to maintain their end-strength goals at 101 and 99 percent, respectively.